March for babies

May, 5th 2018

By Alden Zuck

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This past weekend was an event called March for Babies in Shelby Farms Park, benefiting the March of Dimes. Many people arrived early on a cloudy Saturday morning to walk for the health of moms and for the life of the babies whose lives have been lost and the survivors.

This event brought out and recognized many families who have struggled through this tragedy, including those who were simply there in support.

If you don’t know, the March for Babies event is all about improving the health of mothers and babies through prevention of birth defects, premature births, and infant mortality. This was for the benefit of the March of Dimes organization, which has been around for 80 years and helps support moms throughout their pregnancy, especially when things don’t go according to plan.

As I walked the Whitehaven drumline toward to the stage to begin preparation of the event, I was able to meet the director of the Whitehaven band and many other incredible people such as Todd Demers from News Channel 3. After having the opportunity to introduce the national anthem preformed by the drumline and Anne Cater from Hutchison high school, I also was able to meet Rosa Potts, Paige Leatherman, Dr. Reginald Coopwood, and of course the ambassador Cerpa family.

One of the coolest moments of being on stage and witnessing the event start up was when Karen Brown entered the stage and sang the song “I can only imagine” in such a beautiful and emotional manner. I was able to see the view of many people from the ground being emotionally touched with the song and truly embracing the music with a mindset on the struggling families. During this time I couldn’t help but keep in mind the memory garden that was placed at this event which was a remembrance of all the babies whose lives were lost and families who are in deep pain because of the incident.

Karen Brown sings “I can only imagine”

Despite the inevitable sadness that the event brings out, it was a happy celebration as everyone got ready to make a difference in many lives, beginning with a fun warm up exercise run by the wonderful Kandra Kolehmainen (and Jerome Robinsons attempt to follow along on stage). The day also included a fun zone which had Bounce Houses, Face Painting (which I had to indulge in, of course), coloring, and much more! Hot dogs, chips, cookies, and water were donated for lunch for everyone to enjoy after finishing the walk, along with the DeJAVU food truck.

It was a beautiful sight to witness the mass of people from all ages cheering, walking, and running with a sign on their shirts saying who they are walking for, all excited to make a difference for the benefaction of moms and babies. It was a bittersweet event to be able to witness from behind the scenes as everyone’s passion and desire to create an impact through the march was reflected off their smile at the end of the finish line.

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